Viewing blog posts written by Dorothy Rothrock

What Matters: Time to talk to your legislator!

Posted by Dorothy Rothrock, President on March 23, 2018

The legislature has introduced thousands of new bills to vote on in the months ahead.  We look for impacts on manufacturers and either support or oppose the bills.  While lobbying legislators on those bills, we talk about the existing rules, regulations and taxes already impacting California manufacturers.  The costs of doing business are already too high and the burdens grow every year.

A new regulation might be well-intended to solve a real problem, but the cumulative costs of all California regulations are overwhelming for manufacturers. The high costs of doing business threaten to make many more California manufacturers uncompetitive in the marketplace.  Manufacturers won’t be able to make investments and create jobs if their costs are too high.

State leaders like to tout the size of California’s economy and how many thousands of jobs we have created since the end of the recession - more than any other state! In fact just today the state reported that we added 14,000 jobs last month among all sectors.  That’s good, but not good enough. What really matters is how we are doing compared to other states on an apples-to-apples basis.  The sad truth is that we are only attracting half the number of new manufacturing jobs than we should on a population adjusted basis.  And since the recession’s end we attracted barely two percent of the country’s manufacturing investments even though California has more than 10 percent of US manufacturing.  We are losing manufacturing muscle because costs are too high.  If investments don’t come here, jobs will be lost in the future.  

So if a new bill increases the cost of doing business, even a little bit, we will do our best to tell legislators why that matters.  If they are serious about protecting and promoting new middle-class manufacturing jobs, they will listen and modify their proposals. 

State legislators are “home” in the district next week during the spring break. You can help us lobby on the bills by reminding your legislator about the taxes you pay and the regulations for which you struggle to comply.  You can use this tool to find your legislator's phone number to call. You can also use the tool to send him or her a tweet.

Also sign up for our mobile text alerts and watch for our messages in April, May and June when votes and hearings go into full swing.  You can do so by texting “mfgchamp” to 916-571-9360. Thanks for helping us keep manufacturing a growing part of the California economy.

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State of MFG tour shows why manufacturers are the crown gem of California

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on March 19, 2018

“California is at the intersection of innovation, technology, and modern manufacturing. While our country struggles to fill important jobs in the manufacturing sector, our employers are committed to upskilling the workforce so that as we create new, well-paying jobs in manufacturing, we are also ensuring we have the skilled workforce to fill them.”

That quote from CMTA's Dorothy Rothrock during the National Association of Manufacturers' State of MFG tour captured exactly why we should be so excitied about manufacturing in Califrnia.

We are so pleased the National Association of Manufacturers brought their State of MFG tour to California this month. It is important to underscore the tremendous opportunities and incredible innovations that are created on factory floors all over California.

The annual NAM State of Manufacturing Tour focuses the nation’s attention on the industry that is the backbone of the American economy, highlighting the more than 12 million men and women who are building our future. The tour brings policy discussions and conversations about the future of work to shop floors, schools, tv studios, even the White House.

“California is a hub for innovation and technology, and it’s driving modern manufacturing,” said Timmons. “The research and development happening in the Golden State is paving the way for our industry’s future.”

The California tour stops were in San Francisco and San Jose and they rolled through a t-shirt manufacturer (Social Imprints), a plant based alternative food manufacturer (JUST), a leather belt manufacturer (Circa), a flexible hybrid electronic manufacturer and trainer (NextFlex), and a truck engine research and design facility (PACCAR).

Here’s what these places had in common:

  • Great places to work
  • Tremendous opportunities for workers
  • Operational efficiencies in technology and innovation
  • Investments for the future
  • Contributions to their communities

Everything else varied widely -- from types of workers, products, challenges, market share, facility floors … everything.

Despite the differences there was no denying that manufacturers are major contributors and create pathways for middle class growth and upward mobility. Every lawmaker in California should be looking for policies that make it easy to invest and put more bolts in the ground in the Golden State.


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MFG job growth update

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on March 19, 2018

Here's a quick manufacturing job growth update before the March revision comes out next week

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Ventura's Hammerhead Industries: Another small manufacturer doing great CA things

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on Feb. 26, 2018

We're introducing a new feature to the Champions blog.  We have partnered with CompanyWeek (CW) California to share information on the state's premier small to mid size manufacturers.  CW's featured companies are part of CMTA's Champions recognition program, intended to boost the image of California manufacturing and convince policymakers that manufacturing is the single best way to grow California’s economy and create high quality jobs. 

These companies are committed to California and exemplify the high principles of economic growth, innovation, entrepreneurship, and commitment to their employees. Together the CMTA Champions program and CW's many profiles will demonstrate how California manufacturers make a positive impact on their industry sector, their employees and their communities. 

This week CW California brings you Hammerhead Industries, a Ventura-based company created by two engineers turned entrepreneurs from General Motors. They founded the company in 1995, which focuses on retractable gear products, and have grown to 23 employees.  Their determination and grit show how a small manufacturer can meet the custom demands of 21st Century markets and compete in a global economy.  

They have tremendous opportunities before them, including in the industrial safety industry, but their business environment challlenges remind us that California policies must always consider the impacts on our state's prized manufacturers' abillity to invest and grow.


Hammerhead Industries

Producing a high quality product in the US, two entrepreneurs are meeting the challenges of competing in a global economy and competition from overseas manufacturing. Hammerhead Industries and Gear Keeper products were born from two General Motors engineers looking for a better way to attach and protect their equipment while SCUBA diving. Co-founders John Salentine and Ken Collin tried a basic key retractor to hold their flashlights and gear, but it needed substantially more engineering to make it work properly and to last in salt water and sand.

"We got the product going before 1995," says Salentine. "We linked up with a distributor and put their brand on it. At that time, we operated out of our garage, and around the second year into it, we decided we’ve had to turn this into a real business or someone’s going to copy us." At that point, Salentine and Collin quit their engineering jobs and incorporated Hammerhead Industries for the purpose of designing and building Gear Keeper. ... READ MORE ON CW CALIFORNIA 


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NAM's State of MFG tour coming to California!

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on Feb. 13, 2018

The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) recently kicked off its 2018 State of Manufacturing Tour and comes to California this week, visiting numerous modern manufacturing facilities and schools along the way.

"The national manufacturing renaissance is occurring across the country and the nature of work is changing the way manufacturers operate, said CMTA president Dorothy Rothrock. “We are so excited to show off six of California’s many cutting edge modern manufacturers during the Tour."

During the Tour’s California stop on February 20 and 21, NAM president Jay Timmons and CMTA staff will join San Francisco and Silicon Valley manufacturers, SFMade, employees, students, media, community leaders and elected officials to discuss the rewarding opportunities in manufacturing across the country and the urgent need to build the modern manufacturing workforce.

The Tour will stop at a wide spectrum of state-of-the-art manufacturers including Ritual Roasters, Social Imprints, JUST (formerly Hampton Creek), Circa of America, NextFlex, and PACCAR.  You can either attend the events or you can watch the events on Facebook Live. Details here.

"Innovation is transforming the way manufacturers operate, and there is an urgent need for talented and skilled men and women on our shop floors and in our facilities working as coders, technicians, craftspeople, designers, marketers and so much mor, said NAM’s Jay Timmons. "Our focus on this tour is telling the story of modern manufacturing and the incredible opportunities we have for well-paying, rewarding careers.”


#StateofMFG  #CAmfg  #SFmade

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